Heath boss Painter remaining upbeat despite juggling titanic injury battle

JPCT 111014 S14430144x  Football, County League Division 1: Broadbridge Heath v St Francis Rangers -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-141013-102414001
JPCT 111014 S14430144x Football, County League Division 1: Broadbridge Heath v St Francis Rangers -photo by Steve Cobb SUS-141013-102414001
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Broadbridge Heath were beaten for the fourth time in a row on Tuesday night after suffering a 5-1 defeat to Eastbourne Town in the third round of the Peter Bentley Cup.

Yet, Heath manager Steve Painter is trying to stay positive despite the heavy defeat, but admits that the team is struggling due to the amount of injuries the squad has.

He said:“I am gutted about the result last night, it sounds like a spanking, but it wasn’t. I can’t blame the lads at all.

“We are being crippled by injuries and I feel sorry for the lads because it is affecting them like it’s affecting me.

“At the moment it is like trying to arrange the deck chairs on the Titanic.”

Heath are having to rely on reserve players to make sure that they can field 11 men and one of those players opened the scoring against Town.

Jake Legrange scored his first senior goal in the 29th minute with a superb header. Rising above the Eastbourne defenders, Legrange thumped the ball into the top right-hand corner to make it 1-0.

Moments later though, defender Martyn Flack was forced off the pitch and was taken to hospital after taking a heavy hit in the jaw when challenging for a header.

Eastbourne were level on 39 minutes thanks to a fantastic free-kick from Dan Smith which flew into the top-corner to level the score at 1-1.

Heath’s young side continued to create chances and could have scored four themselves on the night, but it was the visitors who took the lead just before half-time.

A nice move found Liam Baitup who kept his nerve and neatly placed the ball in the back of the net.

It got worse in the second-half for Heath who soon found themselves 3-1 down after Ross Sutton scored on the hour mark with an easy finish. Matt Darby and Dominic Clarke completed the rout with simple goals to ensure that Eastbourne progress to the next round.